Hi everyone, I'm a mom to a 3yo and 4-mo-old. My ODD seemed to adjust pretty well once her baby sister was born, but the last month or two she's really been rebelling, resisting everything, being aggressive towards the baby, rejecting our love and positive reinforcement, basically just going through a tough time. Plus, her sleep has been messed up, which affects daytime behavior, which affects sleep....it's been a blast!
Anyway, I've really been working hard on maintaining my own cool, and being sure to be as positive and loving as possible, even when she's literally pushing me away, because I know that's what she needs deep down. It's hard, though!
So, we were recently at the park, and she was running around and around in the sunlight, flapping her arms like a "butterfly" and basically embodying everything that is beautiful, sweet and joyous about childhood. It is an image that I want to burn into my head forever!
So lately, when I go to bed and when I wake up, I recall this precious image of what I consider to be her true identity - a joyful child who is both loving and open to love. Now, when she does have those frightful tantrumy moments, I can recall this image. It's much easier to love that child than one that is throwing things, yelling, etc, kwim? Anyway, it seems to be working. She's been more cooperative and peaceful, and I've definitely been more calm and able to deal with any struggles in a gentle way (which is probably why she's been better, too).
Maybe this will be helpful to someone else, too - whatever age your child is, and whatever challenges you're facing - try to picture your "true" child (and I don't mean a "perfect" kid who never does anything wrong, but a child who is open to your love and gentle suggestions). Take care!